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2015 Subaru Forester Overview
Overall User Score
Based on 2 reviews
For those times when a full-size sport ute is just too much, when that cute but ultimately cramped wagon won’t fit all the vacation stuff or when the run-of-the-mill crossover is just too weather challenged, maybe a 2015 Subaru Forester is in order. This handy midsize crossover seats 5 passengers, boasts available turbocharged power and, perhaps best of all, delivers standard full-time all-wheel-drive (AWD) traction throughout the lineup.
A complete redesign last year (2014) resulted in a bit of extra cabin and cargo room—some 74.7 cubic feet of total toting acreage with the rear seats folded down—as well as a slight re-labeling of trim designations. Thus the 2015 versions are expected to return as the base Forester 2.5i, the lower midlevel 2.5i Premium, the upper midlevel 2.5i Limited and the top-shelf 2.5i Touring, while the 2.0XT Premium and the 2.0XT Touring retain their recently reworked (downsized but up-powered) turbocharged engines.
Speaking of engines, look for the 2.5-liter horizontally opposed 4-cylinder (flat 4 or “boxer”) powerplant to return in all 2015 Forester 2.5i iterations. Mated with either the standard 6-speed manual transmission or the available continuously variable transmission (CVT), this nifty 4-banger puts out 170 hp and 174 lb-ft of torque. Mileage with the standard stick-shift remains 22 mpg city/29 highway, while the CVT brings mileage numbers to an impressive 24/32.
Standard in both Forester XT trims is a 250-hp turbocharged 2.0-liter flat 4 that uses only the CVT to pound down 258 lb-ft of torque. Expect mileage numbers to run 23/28, while an available trailer hitch allows this downsized ute to tow up to 1,500 pounds. Also returning for both XT iterations and the Limited and Touring non-turbo trims, by the way, is Subaru’s touted X-Mode traction-assist system with descent control.
Standard appearance features and amenities, depending on the trim selected, include 17- or 18-inch alloy wheels, with higher trims toting a roof rack, a power sunroof and a power-opening rear liftgate. All trims boast full power accessories, cloth or leather upholstery, cruise control, telescoping tilt-wheel steering, either manual air conditioning or automatic dual-zone climate control and, new for 2015, all iterations carry a standard rear-view camera with 6-inch multifunction display. Lower trims also pack standard Bluetooth hands-free technology and a single-CD player with either 4 or 6 speakers. Both the 2.5i Touring and the 2.0XT Touring trims, meantime, flaunt a standard 440-watt Harman Kardon premium audio system with 8 speakers, a memory card slot and satellite radio.
Of course, many of the standard creature comforts and appearance items that are standard aboard higher trims remain available to lower trims as options. However, the most significant addition to the options list for 2015 is Subaru’s new EyeSight Safety System, which integrates front stereo-optic cameras with adaptive cruise control, lane-departure warnings and pre-collision braking. Meantime, things like remote engine start, voice-activated navigation and upgraded exterior and interior accents are again available to select 2015 Forester trims.
Standard safety equipment, finally, remains 4-wheel antilock braking (ABS), traction and stability control, front side-mounted airbags, front and rear head airbags and active front headrests, along with daytime running lights, a post-collision safety system and a remote antitheft alarm. The 2.5i Limited and higher trims additionally sport standard front fog/driving lights, with the 2.5i Touring and XT Touring also throwing in standard turn-signal-integrated mirrors.
Have Laptop, Will Travel. I'm retired and travelling the country in a 34' motor home. I'm really digging meeting people . . and sometimes their cars . . . getting a sense of what makes this nation tick. The plan is to visit all the national parks in the continental US, then cruise to Alaska to visit Denali, and to Hawaii to check out Haleakala and the Hawaii Volcano's national parks. Anyhow, when I'm not horsing the motor home around the roadways, I'm tooting around in the 2012 Ford Focus that we tow behind, or making runs to Home Depot and various malls with the 2004 F-150 that just won't die.